Wednesday, October 28, 2009


For the 3rd year in a row a Texas D-1 Ambassador graces the cover of ESPN Rise's Regional Magazine cover. This year's honor goes to 2010 6'9" Daniel Alexander of Dripping Springs, TX. Daniel has committed to Texas A&M to play for the Aggies. National Signing Day is November 11th and I'll be there in Dripping Springs to share the moment with Daniel and his Family, Big Dan & Lynn Alexander of Dripping Springs. Daniel will be the first ever male basketball player from "Drip" to receive a scholarship at the Division One level. The article is really very cool. It speaks of Daniel's statement to his dad at 5 years old while living in Washington, DC after seeing the Harlem Globetrotters play of how one day he too wanted to play for the historically Black basketball team. Fairly prophetic, as we now see his accomplishments on the court being realized in a big way.
I've had the pleasure to coach Daniel in over 100 AAU games. Daniel has deep range. In fact, it's EXTREMELY comfortable NBA catch and shoot range. Daniel first made a national splash when he accompanied myself and several other Texas D-1 Ambassadors team mates to the prestigious Pangos All American Camp in Los Angeles which is run by Dinos Trigonis. It took all of 5 minutes for ESPNU & correspondents to start gushing over his athleticism, shooting range and slick passing ability for a big man.
Above: With LeBron James, and Below: With Vince Carter

A month later in July, on center court in the Adidas Super 64 Tournament in Las Vegas, (against Derrick Favors one of the top recruits in 2009 )Daniel hit 7 three pointers running with the Texas D-1 Ambassadors vs. the Atlanta Celtics. This caused him to be a HOT commodity and his recruitment shot through the roof on the National Scene. All the big boys came calling including Arizona and Marquette. Texas never seriously recruited Daniel. Baylor did, but the Alexander Clan fell in love with the whole A&M experience. They'll also be able to make regular trips to see their son play which is a real plus.
Daniel was one of the top players in the country receiving an invite to Nike's LeBron James Academy in Akron, OH. He also was one of only 20 wing players in the Nation to be invited to Vince Carters Skills Academy in Orlando. I'm not sure who had more fun, myself or Daniel as we sat at a table with Vince, ate wings and watched the NBA Draft.

Overall, Daniel had a disappointing summer because of his nagging injuries. His back kept driving him crazy. There were glimpses of superior play though as he had a great game in the Texas D-1 Ambassadors Championship win vs. Georgia Blazers in Jeff Schneider's Atlantic Slam Tournament in Myrtle Beach, SC. Daniel is sometimes criticized for not being "tough enough" because he's a big guy who excels on the perimeter. Make no mistake about it though...He is TOUGH. After coaxing and prodding him all summer his "sore back" was finally diagnosed as a cracked vertebrae!

He's rehabbed now and ready to lead Dripping Springs into the 4A playoffs. Daniel is a great player, but he's even more outstanding as a person and as a team mate. He truly has been an Ambassador in every sense of the word for our basketball program. Daniel, welcome to the Texas D-1 Ambassadors Hall of Fame and best of luck on the next level!

Coach Max & The D-1 Ambassadors Family.


Below: 2008 ESPN Rise Cover Boy 6'10" Cory Jefferson, Texas D-1 Ambassadors and Killeen High alum is now a freshman at Baylor University. He texted me a week ago, and all is going well. He's putting on weight and developing his offensive game. Baylor Assistant Mark Moorefield says, "Cory's like a sponge". Everyday he gets better and gives a 100% on the court and in the class room. Seems like just yesterday that Cory was a gangly 8th grader who could barely run up and down the court. Look at him now! Cory is the son of Ms Fancy Pace of Killeen, TX.

Below: Former Texas D-1 Ambassador and San Antonio Madison player 2007 6'8" Carlton Scott is now doing his thing at one of the Nation's most prestigious institutions, The Notre Dame Fighting Irish. Carlton battled various injuries throughout his career but has showed remarkable perseverence. Look for him to get big minutes this year in the rough and tumble Big East Conference. Carlton is the son of Mike & Cherita Scott of San Antonio, TX

Best of luck to all of these guys as they represent Central/South Texas at the highest level....Coach Max

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Gunslingers Walk The Streets of Austin, TX

Walk down Austin, TX 6th street and at first glance you're likely to run into a punk rocker, a preppie college kid, a dotcom millionaire in khakis, an East Coast business man in an Armani suit, and of course Leslie our beloved drag queen mayoral candidate. (and that's just on ONE street But beware, Austin, TX is full of native son gunslingers.

These guys aren't toting six shooters though. However, they do have howitzers for arms and pinpoint aim. I'm talking about bad boys chucking the pigskin all over the place, like it's the Wild West. I'm not talking about a couple of hundred mile radius here now, how about roughly 10 miles within Texas' most diverse city. Here's a sanpling:

On Sunday (every Sunday), Austin Westlake's Drew Brees is about to bury an NFL defense with two gun barrels full of passing yards as he brings his dead eye aim to the New Orleans Saints as pro football's most deadly passer.

On Saturdays look out for several of the NCAA's big boys who also hail from the Capital City. The Nation's number one recruit, University of Texas freshman Garrett Gilbert of Austin Lake Travis quietly waits in the wings while Colt McCoy chases a Heisman Trophy and attempts to lead the Longhorns to a national Title. Expect Gilbert, (the son of an old friend of mine Gale Gilbert, ex QB at Cal Berkely and the Buffalo Bills) to really light it up for the Horns as a sophomore and then to follow his pops and have a stellar NFL career. Gilbert led the Lake Travis Cavs to back to back State 4A titles where they destroyed all comers.

Let's bounce back over to Austin Westlake again and check in on Class of 2007's Nick Foles, who resides just down the road from the REAL OK Corral in Tombstone, AZ. Foles is the NCAA's leading passer and has the Arizona Wildcats in the hunt for a PAC-10 title since taking over as the starter in Week 4. His latest outing yesterday led the Wildcats to a 27-13 win over UCLA.

The Kansas Jayhawks has mostly been a laughingstock in the world of NCAA football until the arrival of Austin Lake Travis' Todd Reesing. While he had a rough outing this past weekend against the Oklahoma Sooners, Reesing is on pace to fire it up to the tune of 3600 passing yards this season. If he does, he'll have 10,000 passing yards for his illustrious career.

The only outsider to crack the party of Westlake & Lake Travis QB's making their mark on the national stage is Pflugerville Connally's Steven "Sticks" Sheffield. Sheffield, one of the original Texas D-1 Ambassadors from 2000 took over the reins for Texas Tech University and in his first game as a starter he fired an NCAA record 7 touchdown passes. Sadly, Sheffield suffered a foot injury and will be sidelined for 2-3 weeks. Look for the redshirt junior to throw for 5000 yards next year in Mike Leach's pass happy system.

So, there you have it. Austin's a lot more than boots, bar-bq, politicians and transplanted Californians. There's still a posse of old fashioned gun slingers in "them thar parts" roaming the streets. Who's our next high school phenom that will make noise on the national scene, or in political terms where's our next Smoking Gun?

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

D.J. Stephens: Perfect 10 Dunk @ Memphis Midnight Madness

D.J. Stephens shown with the Texas D-1 Ambassadors, doing what he does best. Throwing it down!
Wow! How quickly things can change. The 3rd week of August D.J. Stephens of Killeen Harker Heights and the Texas D-1 Ambassadors (an unsigned senior) had still not signed scholarship papers, and school was starting in less than a week. It's been chronicled here that the Pride of Killeen, TX signed on the 24th of August with perennial powerhouse Memphis Tigers and will play as a freshman.

Fast forward less than 2 months. I spoke to D.J. a couple of weeks ago on the phone and there was a heck of a racket in the background. I asked him where he was..."At a party?" He said, "No Coach, I am signing autographs at the football game." A few days after that and his mom forwarded me a link with D.J. doing a solo 4 minute interview on Fox Sports. He's growing up

This morning I spoke with Memphis 1st year Head Coach Josh Pastner and he told me D.J. is improving daily. He's already put on 13 lbs of muscle and is up to 183 lbs. The freakish 43" standing vertical stands out, even amongst great athletes like the Tigers have. It was great feedback from Coach.

I finally had a chance to go watch the video from last Friday night's Memphis Midnight Madness. There were 18,500 in attendance and the Fire Marshall turned away 1000's more. In the dunk contest, D.J. had what most people considered the dunk of the night. He scored perfect 10's from the judges. Now get a load of this. The 3 judges were: Penny Hardaway, Rudy Gay and Allen Iverson. In fact, his between the legs windmill dunk from the wing was so impressive that Iverson "bowed down" to Stephens. The fans went nuts.

Once you get there, click on "Launch All Access" then go to "Free Events" and then click on basketball. The ladies take up the first half of the event, with the men's introductions starting at the 45 minute mark for those of you who want to fast forward. The dunk contest starts at approximately 1 hour 15 minute mark.

Enjoy! Coach Max

Monday, October 19, 2009

ESPNU & Texas Basketball Inc. What A Team!

A little over 1 year ago, I decided to experiment with a "blog" and write a little bit here and there about local basketball. Quite honestly I had no idea how it would be received by the general public. I just went off a gut feeling that the Austin & San Antonio basketball community was grossly underserved when it came to RELIABLE & POSITIVE news and that the many high quality players in the area deserved a voice to get their name out Statewide and on the National scene. I wandered around Austin and San Antonio from school to school asking high school coaches if I could watch practice, evaluate players, take pictures, etc. With the exception of a few dinosaurs, I was given a warm welcome by most everyone.
Some 250 plus stories have been written over the last year and I have enjoyed every minute of it. It has been a joy seeing kids grow up before my eyes and being able to report their successes, giving them publicity along the way. Today I was honored to come to an agreement with ESPNU to handle the sharing of information to their site of all Division One basketball prospects and recruits. I will be reporting as always on which school the kids are considering attending, which college coaches are in town and who they are interested in. They've asked me to provide them with evaluations on new prospects as well as the more established names.
In one year, it's come to this. Last week we had 14 of Austin area's (along with a couple of San Antonio teams) top programs in our Inaugural Texas Super Showcase. It gave me a chance to see many of the area's top guys as they head into the 2009-2010 school season. I interviewed several high school coaches and several of their key players. These videos will be posted soon.

Like most folks with the best of intentions, I sometimes get overwhelmed. There are plans in the works for a class by class ranking of players (both boys and girls) as well as a basketball magazine which will provide info about various high school programs in the Austin-San Antonio area. Player spotlights will be done, with every college in the country receiving a copy of this resource/media guide of the area's big time ballers. There will also be an opportunity to allow parents to purchase an ad/shout out to their son or daughter.
Coach Max Ivany

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Texas D-1 Ambassadors Gus Leeper to The Sun Belt

2010 P 6'9" Gus Leeper of Austin Westlake, shown here playing for the Texas D-1 Ambassadors has committed to play for the University of Arkansas-Little Rock.
Just got off the phone with 2010 P 6'9" Gus Leeper of Austin Westlake. He returned from his visit at the University of Arkansas-Little Rock with a big smile on his face as he's made his commitment to play for the Sun Belt Conference school.
The son of Mr. & Mrs. Rick Leeper of Austin, Gus already has focused academic goals and has already decided to study construction engineering. Leeper's improvement over the last year has been dramatic. He plays for a high school coach in Tres Ellis who always has the gym open for the kids and a system where they press constantly. This necessitated Leeper to increase his agility and foot speed, or else.
Gus couldn't run open gym with the UA-LR guys because it was the first day of practrice. However, he said he got along great with them, and Head Coach Steve Shields. He's especially excited about working with former Arkansas Razorback and NBA player Joe Kleine who is an Assistant.
In addition to his high school coach, Leeper wanted to give credit to D-1 Ambassadors Coach Lance Carter (a big man who played D-1 at Mercer University) and my partner T.J. Garza of Speed Killz who has really improved Leeper's conditioning, agility and helped to instill an aggressiveness and confidence in his game.
Big Gus is now focused on helping Austin Westlake win a district championship and to advance deep into the playoffs in this his senior year. Congratulations to Gus and his Family.
Coach Max & The D-1 Ambassadors

UTSA Roadrunner Ruckus

There was a nice crowd for Friday evening's UT-San Antonio's Annual Roadrunner Ruckus. The crowd was treated to player introductions, a video of last season's highlights, a slam dunk contest (won by Freshman Melvin Johnson III) and a three point contest where the Lady Roadrunners trio (led by Round Rock McNeil's "Downtown" Amber Gregg) smoked the Men. The highlight of the night though was the dance off between the two teams. The kids did a great job. What a life, to be a college student and athlete!The Lady Roadrunners celebrated their 2nd consecutive Southland Conference title last year, narrowly losing in double OT to powerhouse Baylor in the NCAA Tournament.

The Men's team fell short in the championship game of the Southland Tourny to Stephen F Austin last spring, but according to ESPN return one of the most experienced teams in the country with 8 seniors. They'll be led by the NCAA Steals Leader, Junior G Devin Gibson clearly the best backcourt player in the the SLC and a future pro. Even more impressive is that Gibson is on pace to graduate a year early, this coming spring with a degree in Information Systems!

Below: Men's Head Coach Brooks Thompson strikes what might be his most relaxed pose of the year as he watches the festivities unfold.

Pflugerville Connally's Jr G Chip Ivany, and Round Rock McNeil's Amber Gregg pose for Texas Basketball Inc. They have been friends now since they played in the 7th grade.

The joys of a parent, enjoying their child's productive life unfold before their eyes. Am I really that short? lol

I sat next to Mr. and Mrs Tommy (Speedy) Gregg during the Ruckus. Coach Gregg, along with Fonzell Martin runs the Austin Elite girls program. Basketball aside we are both tickled that our kids will be working on their Master's degrees. Chip in his 5th year because of his redshirt transfer year from South Alabama, and Amber a year early becaise of accelerated summer school attendance. Great job with basketball in the community Tommy, and with raising a fine daughter!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Texas D-1 Ambassadors in the News

Below: NCAA Steals Leader, Junior Guard Devin Gibson of Houston, TX and Senior P 6'10" Richie Frohlich of Germany lead the UT-San Antonio Roadrunners in what they hope will be an NCAA Tournament berth.
Today is the start of many college team's practices. I'll be in San Antonio at the "Roadrunner Ruckus" this evening. The Roadrunners bring back one of the most experienced teams in the country as they have 8 seniors, led by NCAA steals leader , Junior PG Devin Gibson of Houston, TX. My own son, Chip Ivany now a redshirt junior after sitting out last year due to his transfer from South Alabama is itching to make his second trip to the NCAA Tournament, this time with UT-San Antonio. As part of this evening's festivities the men's & ladies' teams have a dance off. It's a lot of fun. This year, Chip and 6'10" Richie Frohlich of Germany each have a dance solo. This could get ugly! Let the college hoop season begin!

2009 WF 6'10" John Henson, formerly of Round Rock LED the North Carolina Tar Heels in their timed preseason one mile run. Look for Henson to make his mark immediately. He's projected to go #4 overall in the 2011 NBA Draft.

2008 G 6'7" Travis Jones of Georgetown impressed big time at the Junior College Showcase in Dallas, TX last week. My phone rang off the wall as schools called for a bigger insight into Travis' past. After one year at Lon Morris JC (TX) Jones has grown from 6'5"-6'7" and has really matured as a player and as a person. Big XII and SEC schools are now interested. Especially fond of him are Iowa State and Georgia. Baylor's in the mix too, but won't have a scholarship available until this spring, so they're asking Travis and his mother Monica to be patient until then. Stay tuned.

2010 P Gus Leeper of Austin Westlake is on his official visit to Arkansas-Little Rock as we speak.

I received a text a couple of nights ago from 2007 C 6'10" Brandon Webster who now tips the scales at a generous 275 lbs. for the Fresno State Bulldogs. "What's up Big Webb", I asked. In his own inimitable way, he retorted "This conditioning's killing me Coach" If Big Webb can keep the pounds off and really take to being fit, a pro career is in the cards for the former Bryan High shotblocker.
Did you know? Texas Tech gridiron star QB Stephen Sheffield of Pflugerville Connally who threw for 491 yards and 7 TD's last week was one of the original Texas D-1 Ambassadors in his 6th grade year, way back in 2000.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Texas Super Showcase: Additional Player Evaluations

In addition to the kids who excelled and made the 1st and 2nd team All Tourny selections there were many additional standouts. Any one of these had the potential of cracking the top 12 performers in the tournament but for some reason or another they didn't make the cut. This is not to say that some of them may not be even better prospects than others I ranked ahead of them based on last weekend's selections. They are in no particular order, just brief evaluations and a shout out.

Below: 2011 SG Austin Birch of Austin St. Michael's. Can shoot the ball with the best of them. Below: 2012 P 6'6" Drew Wikelius of Austin Westlake continues to be one of the area's most intriguing prospects. He looks like he'll grow several more inches. He's had two successive summers of nagging injuries, perhaps stunting his athleticism somewhat but his fundamentals and footwork are sound. Could be a dark horse role player who determines how far Westlake advances.
Below: 2011 G 6'2" Branden Golden of Austin Reagan showed a nice mid range touch and got to the hole most any time he wanted.
2011 G 6'1" Hagen Fell is another Austin Westlake player who befell to injuries last year. He's a high level athlet and if he plays under control and does a good job of taking care of the ball he may be able to spell star PG Cody Doolin from time to time.
2011 G Alex Parrish of Austin Reagan is beginning to assert himself as a guy you just can't leave open at the three point line.
2010 W 6'6" Conner Kemper of Austin Westlake was just a hair away from the All Tourny team. He has a deadly perimeter shot and is starting to be a more aggressive inside presence on the boards. With P Gus Leeper on the frontside as a shotblocker, Kemper is more than capable of cleaning up backside rebounds along with Carl Meyertons.
2010 G 6'0" Max Harford of New Braunfels is a tough nut. He's solid defensively, is built like a linebacker, defends hard and does a lot of little things well. A great guy to have on your team.
Below: 2011 W Royce O'Neale of Harker Heights has a nice stroke from the outside. He's long, and rebounds well. He'll be in the post for a smallish Harker Heights team. That hasn't been a problem as witnessed by last year's HH undersized post, D.J. Stephens who landed a scholarship with the Memphis Tigers.
Below: 2011 WG Malcolm Canada of Austin Akins brings full effort, and a hard driving game every time he steps on the court. He's physical and goes to the rim with abandon.

2011 G 6'2" Jake Kocher of Austin St. Michael's can score with the best of them. Aside from San Antonio Lee's Paul Garnica he was the 2nd leading scorer at the Texas Super Showcase. He's put on muscle and has an ever improving repertoire of ways to get to the basket and score. Now, once he puts a similar premium on defense he could be home free.
2010 G Cameron Gunther was solid for Killeen Ellison. he has developed into a leader. He's physical, shoots the ball well, gets to the goal and rebounds his position well.
2011 F Ian Gulick of New Braunfels, a lanky player just seemed to have a knack for being in the right place on the court. Scored in bunches, one game I watched.
2010 G Dwayne Hutchinson of Harker Heights showed above average athleticism and made a couple of dazzling moves while getting to the goal.
2011 F 6'4" Micha Rainey of harker Heights showed nice footwork, ran the floor well and showed nice moves around the basket.
2010 F Zach Karcewski of Austin Lake Travis competes hard and plays deceptively well above the rim.
2011 F Billy Sharakis of Austin Lake Travis a move in from Denmark plays a tough, and I mean TOUGH game. He's ultra physical and makes no bones about going to the rim.
2011 W Adam Whitlock is a bouncy athlete. He has a beautiful stroke from the outside and is long enough that he can rebound the ball as well.
2011 P Nick Leasure has become a very consistent, hard worker in the low blocks. He's not afraid to mix it up with the best of them and gets his share of points and rebounds.
2010 G Jarrell Turner of Pflugerville was just a shade away from the All Tournament selections. He can get hot from the 3 point line and bury you in a New York minute. he almost singlehandedly brought The Ville back to within two points of Westlake in the championship game before Cody Doolin righted the ship for the Chaps victory.
2011 G Deron Belford of Kerrville Tivy (a move in from Corpus Christi Calallen) added some much needed ball handling and athleticism for the Antlers. This will free up All region player Jonathan Perry this coming year by lightening the ballhandling load.
2010 P 6'6" Tyler Kotson of Kerrville Tivy is a scrappy, physical guy. He's going to get a lot of second effort points around the cup.
2010 P 6'7" Taylor Finlay of Kerrville Tivy is tall and long enough to help Tivy make a deep run this coming season.
2011 G Alex Reinking of Austin High looks to follow in his two older brothers footsteps. He does many things well, including shooting, solid ball handling and a high basketball IQ.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Texas Super Showcase MVP & 1st Team All Tourny

The Cream of the Crop from the Texas Super Showcase are an outstanding group. Felony warrants should be issued for Grand Theft to San Francisco Head Coach Rex Walters, Northern Colorado Head Man Tad Boyle, and Lamar Boss Steve Roccaforte as all three have flat out stolen quality players from Central/South Texas for their teams. PG Cody Doolin (San Francisco), PG Paul Garnica (Northern Colorado) and W Demetris "Cleveland" Smith (Lamar) are all players who attracted "bigger name" schools. But hats off to the recruiting jobs done by the various staffs to make these kids feel comfortable in choosing their respective programs.
Above & Below: Austin Westlake's Cody Doolin did everything a leader needed to do in spearheading his squad to a 4-0 record. He scores when needed, penetrates and dishes to the open man, and simply competes every minute he's on the floor like it's his last time to ever play the game. Westlake has a legitmate opportunity to be the first 5A team from Austin to get to The Drum in a long, long time.

Below: WG Demetris "Cleveland" Smith could easily have been the MVP. I would have given him the nod if Pflugerville had beaten Westlake in the final. He's a bundle of energy, has great range on his shot, has much improved handles and finishes strong at the rim. On top of that he rebounds like a demon.

Below: It was 2010 PG Paul Garnica and the 7 Dwarfs, otherwise known as the San Antonio Lee Rebels as the took on Austin Lake Travis in the opening game. Paul was up to his old tricks right out of the gate as he gave the most scintillating individual performance of the day when he dropped 50 points on Austin Lake Travis which has a pretty fair defensive ethic. Garnica is an unconscious scorer who also loves to drop a pretty dime. He has a shot at breaking NBA player Devin Brown's career scoring record for the City of San Antonio this season. I predict he will do it.

Below: The Baby Faced Assassin, 2011 G Deon Mitchell of Pflugerville showed his silky smooth offensive game in leading the Panthers to the Championship game. He's a deadeye three point shooter who gets to the rim whenever he wants, drawing contact and finishing with either hand. Mitchell is big time, already attracting Big East, Big XII and PAC 10 interest.

Below" 2010 P Gus Leeper ofAustin Westlake is almost unrecognizable compared to last spring. His strength and agility has improved by leaps and bounds and he's now becoming sure of himself on the offensive end of the court. He's an above average shot blocker and takes up a lot of space in the paint. Gus visits the Sunbelt's University of Arkansas-Little Rock on Thursday. They've already offered and my gut feeling after visiting with Gus and his Pops, Rick is that they will accept sooner rather than later. Gus can hardly contain himself when he talks about the chance to be coached and developed under Assistant Coach Joe Kleine who starred for the Arkansas Razorbacks and had a long career in the NBA. Stay tuned.

2010 W 6'3" Kevin McFarland of Austin Akins is becoming a bonafide college level player. He competed as hard as anybody showing a solid perimeter shot, an ability to drive to the hole with authority as well as rebounding much bigger than his size. McFarland's wide body allows him to bang with players much taller than him.
2011 PG Yolonzo Moore of Austin Akins continues to impress. I first had a chance to really watch him closely at my All American Camp a couple of weeks ago, with a follow up peek at the Texas Super Showcase. He's a pass first guard, strong off the dribble with excellent court vision. He's able to get to the hole, create for others and also showed good range on his shot. Bursting onto the scene as a D-1 prospect.

Texas Super Showcase-2nd Team All Tournament

The Inaugural 2009 Texas Fall Showcase 2nd Team All Tournament selections are as follows: Above: 2010 6'4" Combo Guard Jonathan Perry will once again lead Kerrville Tivy. A two time All Region player Perry has put on muscle and increased his footspeed, both of which will land him a D-1 scholarship before all is said and done.

Above: The sky is the limit for 2011 6'0" Combo Guard Robert Lee of Austin LBJ. He has great defensive intensity, superior hops and quickness . This allowed him to get to the goal at will at the Texas Showcase.

2011 PG 6'4" Eric McClellan of Austin High broke out on my radar in a big way at the Texas Showcase. He looks like he'll grow to 6'6". He's long, has a nice shot and good handles. He can get to the rim quickly with his long strides. Could be a big time D-1 prospect if he gets focused and works on it.

2010 P 6'5" Carl Meyertons of Austin Westlake played outstanding all weekend long. He's one of those guys who when the game ends has a quiet 8 pts and 10 rebounds. Quiet and efficient, Meyertons will likely join Lake Travis' David Eads at M.I.T. He visits there next week. A true scholar-athlete, he can be the darkhorse that fills in the blanks in Westlake's pursuit of getting to State.

2010 P 6'4" Cornelious Cammock of Austin Reagan is a big body who had as good a low post footwork as anyone at the Showcase. He turns strong to the hole and finishes with and one power. He competed hard all day and unfortunately had to check out early as he caught an errant elbow and lost a tooth.

2011 WG 6'5" Jalel Williams of Killeen Ellison lived up to his advance billing. Returning to Ellison for his junior year (after a year attending hs in Federal Way, WA ) Williams was able to get to the rim at will and once there was relentless on the boards keeping balls alive and getting putbacks. He's a big time guard prospect.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Texas Super Showcase Results- Champions: Austin Westlake

Austin Westlake goes 4-0 to win the Inauguaral 2009 Fall Texas Super Showcase on Sunday at Austin LBJ's High School. The Chaps confirmed my early season prediction that they are the team to beat in the Austin area. Along the way they topped Austin High, Austin Reagan, San Antonio Lee and finally beat Pflugerville 74-64 in the Championship.
Westlake will go as far as the Senior D-1 Triplets will take them. 6'2" PG Cody Doolin is the straw that stirs the drink. The University of San Francisco commit is a deadly, deep shooter who can finish in traffic at the rim. 6'9"P Gus Leeper who visits Arkansas-Little Rock on Thursday is a different player this year. Physically he's stronger, mentally he's confident and his agility and skill level has shown dramatic strides. You read it here first, that I fully expect Leeper to commit to the Sun Belt school in the next several days, once he concludes his visit. 6'6" swingman Conner Kemper is a great catch and shoot guy who causes plenty of mismatches on the wing. His improved ballhandling and quickness along with superior grades have him on the radar of Yale, Northeastern and locally with Texas State and Stephen F Austin.
Coach Tres Ellis has a deep crew that is much more althetic than his last year's group. In his second year at Westlake he's really had a chance to hammer home and have the kids buy in to his uptempo full court pressure system. He's got a nice group of supportive role players led by 6'5" Senior Carl Meyertons who is sneaky good in the post and has a nice face up game out to the free throw line. Expect 2011 G Hagen Fell to have a breakout year. He's super athletic, and just needs to learn to tighten up his decision making. Look for 2012 6'6" Drew Wikelius to add one more piece to the puzzle. The youngster has battled injuries the last two years, but when he's healthy is a skilled, physical player down low.

Perhaps the biggest thing to come out of this weekend's championship was getting their District 28-5A foe off their back. In a rare win over a talented Pflugerville team in the final, the Chaps may have gotten a psychological monkey off their backs. Pflugerville has won 7 district championships in a row to this point. Ding dong, the witch is dead? Well, she is for a day. We'll see how it plays out during what should be a great district race.

Friday, October 9, 2009

All American Prodigy Camp/High Academic Camp Evaluations Class of 2013

The Class of 2013 in attendance at the 2009 Fall All American Prodigy Camp was guard heavy. Several outstanding prospects were on hand as well as other hopefuls who showed promise but will continue to work to make their next level dreams come true.

#38 2013 G 5'7" T.J. Williams of Pflugerville continues to show loads of potential. Although still on the smallish side, his skill set and court vision are superior. At most other high schools he'd play varsity as a frosh (don't be surprised to see Pflugerville Coach Mike Murphy move him up after the New Year) but The Ville has a bevy of talented guards, led by 2011 Deon Mitchell. Williams time will come and Mike Murphy has another D-1 prospect waiting in the wings at the point in the youngster. Williams is already starting to receive questionnaire's from the big boys, Southern Cal in the Pac-10 among them. He can handle the ball with either hand, and has an above average shot. We'll watch his physical growth as time goes along.

#43 2013 G 5'11" Dapo Igunfeitimi of San Antonio O'Connor was a pleasant surprise. He's a very explosive athlete and already has a powerful physique. He hustled non stop during camp, and was very aggressive going to the rim. He was not afraid to compete with anyobody. He has a strong left, but needs to work on his right, while not being singleminded about only getting to the rim. I'm not sure how much he'll grow so improved court vision will be imperative.

#66 2013 WG 6'0" Chris Rogers of Pflugerville is an athletic, strong player. He seemed to be more comfortable in the post, as he showed good footwork and moves down there. Not sure if that's where his future is though, so he'll need to retool his game to be a power guard.

#47 2013 G 5'6" De'Andre Carson may be just what the doctor ordered for Kyle Lehman High, as the young school has not had much basketball history. Carson is a solid ballhandler with a good shot. He's got a good body and is open to instruction. That's always a good sign for a young player.

#26 Nick Mata of Austin St. Michael's showed a deft shooting touch. I especially liked his step back move, allowing him to create space to get his shot off against taller players. Had good court vision as well. A hustling, crafty player.
#41 2013 W 6'3" Rowdy Winters will hit the hardwood this fall for Kerrville Tivy. Although he's got a long way to go to replicate what All Region Player 2010 Jonathan Perry has done for the Antlers, he may possibly end up with 4 varsity letters when he leaves Tivy. He's got a solid first step and decent handles along with a good mid range face up game. His back to the basket footwork is also solid. Improvement in his defensive quickness is needed.

#23 2013 W 6'1" Sled Allen of Austin St. Michael's needs to be a little more aggressive. He's got good size for a frosh but needs to grow into his body and work on improving his face up skill set. Appears to be a hard worker who will improve under Coach Mackey Smith.

#25 2013 G 5'7" Ian Kocher of Austin St. Michael's is showing quick improvement from the first time I saw him. He has decent handles, and a better than adequate shot. I liked his aggressiveness to the rim. Now he just needs to grow a little.

#51 2013 G 6'0" Hunter Patterson of Kerrville Tivy showed very nice court vision, spotted the open man and showed a nice first step. He needs to work on strength, finishing at the rim and an improved left hand.

#37 2013 F Alex Pylypec of Austin St. Michael's is a wide body who rebounds the ball well. He's not afraid to to the dirty work down low. He needs to work on his footwork and quickness.